Roman Reigns could face top WWE star after 3,000+ days at Royal Rumble instead of two former rivals - Report 

Undisputed WWE Universal Champion Roman Reigns
Undisputed WWE Universal Champion Roman Reigns

Roman Reigns has a few challengers who could step up in time for WWE's Royal Rumble event in St. Petersburg, Florida, at Tropicana Field on January 27, 2024. As of this writing, per renowned wrestling journalist Dave Meltzer, the superstars in consideration are Kevin Owens, LA Knight, and Randy Orton.

For the first time since arguably WrestleMania 39, the Undisputed WWE Universal Championship has a legit possibility of changing hands. Roman Reigns vs. Randy Orton is a fresh matchup, as the last time the two faced each other was all the way back at SummerSlam 2014.

On the latest edition of the Wrestling Observer Radio, Dave Meltzer stated that Reigns vs. Orton is the likely route the company is taking. The seeds were already planted from the get-go.

The Viper acknowledged his issues with The Bloodline on RAW last week. This past Friday, he appeared on SmackDown to officially sign the contract and become exclusive to the blue brand. He even fended off Solo Sikoa and Jimmy Uso with an assist from LA Knight.

Meltzer also noted that LA Knight - while a rematch with "The Tribal Chief" is still on the table - may be heading in a different direction. Meanwhile, Owens and United States Champion Logan Paul notably foreshadowed a major title program on SmackDown.

The legendary former General Manager of Friday nights, Teddy Long, recently pointed to an interesting pairing for a future showdown from the aforementioned names. Check out the details here.

Roman Reigns is scheduled to return to WWE SmackDown on December 15, 2023

WWE has announced the dates of Roman Reigns' next appearances. The part-time champion has annoyed the viewers of the product with his absence on television despite holding on to the Undisputed WWE Universal Championship for well over 1,182 days and counting.

However, Orton succeeded in smoothing the ruffled feathers of the fans with the promo he cut Friday night. He told The Wiseman Paul Heyman to call Roman Reigns and let him know that "Daddy's back."

This will be an interesting storyline to follow for wrestling fans heading into Royal Rumble. If Orton's past has taught us anything (CM Punk and the Nexus, Seth Rollins and The Authority), it's that he usually comes out on top by infiltrating a gang of superstars before destroying them.

Does Randy Orton stand as a legit threat to Roman Reigns in your eyes, as he is gunning for his 15th world title win? Sound off in the comments section below!

One of Samoa Joe's colleagues had harsh words for him HERE